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Will you take the pledge? I will not engage in mud-slinging against our Democratic candidates

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BushOut06 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:18 PM
Original message
Will you take the pledge? I will not engage in mud-slinging against our Democratic candidates
Edited on Tue Jan-23-07 06:53 PM by BushOut06
Over the past few days and weeks, I've seen quite a few nasty attacks on some of the Democratic candidates, primarily Hillary Clinton. I'm not saying that we all have to hold our tongue and not engage in rational debate, but much of what's happening has crossed the line into vicious personal attacks. Threads like "Hillary is a fake" aren't helping any.

If you don't like a particular candidate, that's your right. But rather than launch mean-spirited attacks against them, tell us about YOUR candidate. Tell us who you support, and why you think that person should be our nominee in '08. If you feel the need to point out deficiencies in a particular candidate, please try doing so in a civilized manner.

I realize this is DU, and it's the nature of this forum to produce some very spirited debates. But for the most part, we've been able to discuss other issues in a civilized manner. The stakes in the next election couldn't be higher. You know the repugs are sitting back, loving every minute of this. They're hoping that the primary season will split the Democratic party in two. The repugs are supposed to be the party of nasty mud-slinging and gutter tactics. We don't need to delve to their level. We're supposed to be the more civilized party.
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Radio_Lady Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:20 PM
Response to Original message
1. I'm taking this pledge... thanks for bringing it up. K&R...
Edited on Tue Jan-23-07 06:23 PM by Radio_Lady
"We must hang together... if we don't, we shall surely hang separately."

Pros and cons for a candidate are OK, but let's not bash each other for their choices.

This is NOT the Olive Garden, fried chicken with cornflakes, smoking or listening to Howard Stern while breastfeeding.

This is the fate of this nation hanging in the balance.

In peace,

Radio Lady
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spoony Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:21 PM
Response to Original message
2. Awesome, I'm onboard eom
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porphyrian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:21 PM
Response to Original message
3. Nope. I'll cuss out anyone of 'em on a whim and like it. - n/t
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5X Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 07:19 PM
Response to Reply #3
45. Yeah, what you said. n/t
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The Straight Story Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:22 PM
Response to Original message
4. Well, I would take the pledge...but....
I would end up breaking it at some point probably :)

I'll give it the old college try. But then, I never went to college....
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Mojambo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:22 PM
Response to Original message
5. I will bash them when they deserved to be bashed. n/t
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BushOut06 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:24 PM
Response to Reply #5
7. You can still do that in a civilized manner
There's a difference between saying "I disagree with so-and-so's stand on issue B" and saying "So-and-so is a fake and a liar".
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Mojambo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:30 PM
Response to Reply #7
11. What if they actually are a liar?
Look, all candidates will have attackers and defenders.

I say we have at it and see where things fall.

It won't be pretty, but it never is and never will be.

I agree that efforts should be made towards civility, but ultimately this primary season is going to play out like every other one we've had. It'll be ugly, hurtful and bloody. Feelings will be hurt and friendships will end.

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Matariki Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:34 PM
Response to Reply #11
15. Well how about this -
Candidate x is a liar because s/he lied about x when s/he clearly knew it was a lie.

Rather than just calling someone a liar and not backing it up?
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Mojambo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:37 PM
Response to Reply #15
18. Sounds fine to me.
I'm assuming that anyone worth listening to would provide the backup anyway.

Not everyone is going to be worth listening to come this primary season and no pledge is going to change that.
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Matariki Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:42 PM
Response to Reply #18
22. heh - no kidding on that.
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BushOut06 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:48 PM
Response to Reply #22
23. Yep, I feel like a regular Don Quixote
I've always despised negative campaigning, and I really hate to see fellow Democrats ripping each other to shreds. I might have to take a vacation from DU for a few months, if only to retain my sanity. I still don't know who I'm going to vote for next year, I want to carefully examine each candidate, see where they stand on various issues, and look at their voting records. I refuse to base my opinion on any one single issue, or any one single vote from several years ago.
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jelly Donating Member (312 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:30 PM
Response to Reply #7
12. Agreed. Comparing platforms: good; personal attacks: bad.
Most of us here are ready to vote Democratic regardless of whoever wins in the primaries. Jumping on the attack bandwagon against one candidate or the other might contribute to the overall negative chatter about the various candidates, perhaps influencing someone who is on the fence about which party to vote for at the final election to vote Republican.
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:51 PM
Response to Reply #5
27. There is a difference between bashing and criticism
"Hillary has fat ankles," and "Obama has big ears and a funny name," are examples of bashing. They are counterproductive at best and never fail to lower the tone of the board at worst.

"Both Hillary and Obama have taken their programs from the DLC, and that type of conservatism is not what the US needs now," is an example of criticism, especially when specific examples are given. Criticism is a useful function of this board in helping us choose among the candidates.

Attempting to shut down criticism is even more counterproductive than bashing. I would suggest that if lock step agreement with no criticism allowed is something people on another board which shall remain nameless are better at than we are.
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Mojambo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:53 PM
Response to Reply #27
30. I would submit that "bash" and criticize are used somewhat interchangeably
No personal attacks I can get behind.

But I will be frequently bashing Hillary's position on the war and John Kerry's lackluster 04 defense against swiftboating.
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BushOut06 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:55 PM
Response to Reply #30
32. Subject line changed - I changed "bash" to "mud-slinging"
Hope that gets the point across better.
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Mojambo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:58 PM
Response to Reply #32
34. I think it will. n/t
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La Lioness Priyanka Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:23 PM
Response to Original message
6. happily.
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Stu DeBeouf Donating Member (144 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:26 PM
Response to Original message
8. I will not...
lay a hand on them...but my criticism of their actions and words are called free speech. No sacred cows.
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3121guitarist Donating Member (167 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:27 PM
Response to Original message
9. No, hell no.
The GOP does that fascist stuff. If I don't agree with a democrat, I will say it and state it as loud as my lungs can muster. No free ride for anyone. Gotta stay consistant. If you aint on the left, you don't get my vote. Out of Iraq now, no surge money, or you are toast in my book.
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BushOut06 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:31 PM
Response to Reply #9
13. What fascist shit are you talking about?
Who's being fascist here? I'm merely asking if people will voluntarily curtail some of the more vicious, nasty mud-slinging. If you read my OP, I never said we shouldn't disagree with the candidates. The GOP fascist shit you're talking about is the "either you agree with us or you're anti-American". That's fascist. Trying to bring about a more civil tone is not.

If you want to wallow in the mud, that's your choice. Sadly, I'm sure there are many DUers who will be more than happy to join you there, and WHOEVER our candidate eventually is, they'll be covered in so much mud as to be almost unrecognizable. You do realize that virtually every candidate has opponents on this board?
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LoZoccolo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 10:46 PM
Response to Reply #9
55. If you aint voting Democratic...
...you aint in my threads!

:hi: :nuke:
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Downtown Hound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:29 PM
Response to Original message
10. I'm a Democrat, not a robot
I will criticize any politician that does not represent what I feel are true liberal ideals, such as not invading sovereign nations without a damn good reason.

I will also continue to vote for Democrats over Republicans even if I personally dislike them, in the hopes of the party getting and maintaining power so that the true liberals will have a voice in our government.
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BushOut06 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:33 PM
Response to Reply #10
14. GODDAMNED IT!
Please - who the fuck is saying not to criticize the candidates? God almighty, sometimes I wonder if people even read the entire post, or if you simply see the subject line and write your knee-jerk responses.
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Downtown Hound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:35 PM
Response to Reply #14
16. YOU said not to bash a Democratic candidate
Read the first line of your own post.
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BushOut06 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:41 PM
Response to Reply #16
21. What does the word "bash" mean to you?
How does asking people not to "bash" candidates translate to not criticizing them at all? Debate is healthy, and I'm not even saying that we shouldn't point out faults. But there is no legitimate need for vicious personal attacks.
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Mojambo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:50 PM
Response to Reply #21
25. Well, then shouldn't you have asked for a pledge not to attack personally?
Because to me it is entirely legitimate to "bash" a candidate on the issues and their positions.

Perhaps it's just a mix up about terminology, but I think a more narrowly worded pledge would garner better support.
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BushOut06 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:52 PM
Response to Reply #25
29. I thought that's what was inferred
Perhaps I'll amend the OP subject line to make it more clear. Thanks.
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Downtown Hound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 07:02 PM
Response to Reply #21
39. This is politics, and politics is hardball.
I have no problem calling Hillary Clinton, Joe Lieberman, or some Democrats of old such as Dick Gephardt or Tom Daschle a whole variety of names such as war criminal, corporate whore, and fascist appeaser due to their overwhelming support for our invasion of Iraq. Sorry, but we can't have it both ways. We can't call Bush all these things when he does them and let our own candidates off the hook. It's hypocritical.

And would I still vote for them over somebody like McCain or Guiliani? Yes, because like I said, I recognize that the most important thing is to get the Republicans out of power. I don't think any of these people would have started the war if they had been in Bush's position, which is why they would automatically make better leaders than him. But they went along with it, mostly out of cowardice. They were afraid of looking unpatriotic. And look at how many people have died because of their cowardice. Look at how much money our nation has lost. Look at how much prestige that our nation once had in abundance is gone forever.

Maybe they wouldn't have been able to stop the war even if they did vote against it. But at least their conscience, and the conscience of the party, would be clean. I would vote for them, but I would be doing so out of fear, not admiration, all the while lamenting the fact that I am reduced such a pathetic choice. And this is not a statement against all Democrats. There are many fine Democrats that I would be proud to support. Howard Dean, Barack Obama, Al Gore, to name just a few.

So what you refer to as "bashing" our candidates, I simply see as just being honest.
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porphyrian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:50 PM
Response to Reply #14
26. You really shouldn't tell people not to criticize the candidates. What if they deserve it?
:evilgrin:
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mentalsolstice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:37 PM
Response to Original message
17. I'm game!
Honestly, I'm excited about our field so far. I can't imagine voting (or not voting, period) against any of them in the general election. They all have strengths and weaknesses. Some of them obviously cannot and will not win the primary, nor the general election. However, they will be key factors in shaping the final candidate's platform.
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derby378 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:39 PM
Response to Original message
19. Don't make a pledge you know you can't keep...
The least we can do, however, is try to keep it civil and on the issues.
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xultar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:40 PM
Response to Original message
20. I DO!
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cynatnite Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:49 PM
Response to Original message
24. No problem here...
I won't bash dem candidates because we've got a great group there. Don't need to tear down any of them.
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OregonBlue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:52 PM
Response to Original message
28. I'll second that. It's okay to RESPECTUFLLY disagree with a candidate's
position but we don't need to be putting each other or each other's candidates down. Let's try to be ADULTS here. If you want the name calling and bullying go on over to Free Republic. They are happy to sling mud.
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AnnInLa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:54 PM
Response to Original message
31. Yes, I will gladly take that pledge
Please report only verifiable facts about candidates with trusted sources, not your or anyone else's opinions.

This is one thing that the RW did very well. They circled their wagons and imposed strict loyalty to their party. We should do the same.
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natrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:59 PM
Response to Reply #31
37. fuck no
yea they circled their wagons but look at the filth they ended up with
stifle dissent and free speech and you end up with monsters
that is basic
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BushOut06 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 07:01 PM
Response to Reply #37
38. Nobody is stifling dissent here
That's the big difference. With them, you either agree with their policies, or you're anti-American.

Here, I'm encouraging debate and dissent. However, we don't need to engage in mud-slinging.
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AnnInLa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 07:03 PM
Response to Reply #37
41. we are not filthy to start with, like they were
not saying stifle "free speech," just saying "encourage responsible speech" that does not drag down the Dem party or the Dem causes.
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ScreamingMeemie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:57 PM
Response to Original message
33. This is the nature of politics and discussion boards. One man's bashing
is another man's truth. It's a very nice sentiment, but it will never happen. I was a moderator during the primary season for 2004. The slightest disagreement leads to accusations of mudslinging.

How about I state why I do not care for a certain candidate when someone asks me and leave it at that? :hi:
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babylonsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 07:24 PM
Response to Reply #33
47. That's fair, and
hello, MrsGrumpy! Long time, no see! :hi:
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Lord Byron Donating Member (293 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:58 PM
Response to Original message
35. No
I will continue to bash corporate DLC infiltrators.
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Wizard777 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 06:58 PM
Response to Original message
36. Nope! I won't drink the kool aid and you can;'t make me!
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KittyWampus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 07:02 PM
Response to Original message
40. In memory of Kephra, I try my hardest not to sling mud at Dems.
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Zodiak Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 07:03 PM
Response to Original message
42. An easy pledge to keep
Edited on Tue Jan-23-07 07:09 PM by Zodiak Ironfist
This was my intention during this primary season...

I am going to promote Al Gore (and a couple others), but I will not use pejoratives against other candidates nor will I engage in any negative discussion about any of the candidates unless I have a valid reason rooted in policy.

If someone attacks Al with smears and slams, I will calmly refute the claims and point out that the poster does not convince anyone with such tactics.

Does everyone remember the "but Leiberman is 95% progressive" argument that sprouted here on DU during the Senatorial race last year? Man...nothing got my blood boiling more than hearing that talking point, which was wrong on so many levels. I just went in, listed every vote in which Leiberman betrayed the party, and stated that the 95% simply wasn't true. Killed a lot of threads that way. No drama, no attention :evilgrin:

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Jcrowley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 07:08 PM
Response to Original message
43. The use of the term "pledge" in this regard is cause for concern
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babylonsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 07:08 PM
Response to Original message
44. I won't sling mud but will provide rebuttal links if/when they're warranted. nt
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Zodiak Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 07:19 PM
Response to Reply #44
46. Nothing wrong with that
That's debate....and I'll be goddamned if I am going to take a pledge not to debate. But I don't want to get people's hackles up...I want to convince. We should all want that...it is campaigning. Post links....list bullet points....cite facts....quote quotes. It's all good.

Political discourse is not a frigging free-for-all, as too many seem to think. Imagine someone came to your door promoting candidate X and called you brain-dead for not agreeing with him. How likely are you to vote for candidate X?

I get dismayed when people are so wrapped up in a cult of personality for someone they don't know that they would call someone they do know all sorts of names under the sun and swear them off forever....simply for liking another guy/gal in the same party. Boggles the mind.
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babylonsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 07:26 PM
Response to Reply #46
48. I have my favorite and voice my opinion, but try not to bash anyone.
It is counterproductive and does no good for the Dems or DU as a whole.
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Zodiak Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 08:00 PM
Response to Reply #48
50. I am totally in agreement n/t
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ChairmanAgnostic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 07:28 PM
Response to Reply #44
49. and there is nothing wrong with getting bad info out
we do not want to waste time, money, energy, and more if someone has a closet-based skeleton that would be fatal to the campaign. Then, it is important to mention stuff like that
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Telly Savalas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 08:18 PM
Response to Original message
51. I'm against the mudslinging.
But I still think Sen. Clinton needs to address the allegations that she and her husband own an island where they hunt other humans a la "The Most Dangerous Game."
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FredStembottom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 10:37 PM
Response to Original message
52. Awwww gosh, real democracy can be loud and angry and belligerent.
I consider it a good sign that such things happen here.

Right now I am feeling a huge, powerful machine has been shifted into gear to ram not only the weakest Democratic candidate down our throats - but one who is really more of a Republican than what I would accept as Democratic.

It's an emergency to me. I'm a quite powerless truck driver in Minnesota. I need representation in Washington. People like me have had none for decades and I see a powerful elite gearing up to deny me my little glimmer of hope by hand-picking an imitation Democrat that will either A) lose handily or B) demonstrate selective deafness as regards the millions like me (just as her husband did) should she somehow win.

I am not willing to have my brand-new, fresh-from-the box hopes dashed so very soon. I just might get upset and yell or something. It's about wanting to be heard - along with millions like me - and the Hillary Machine's entry into the ring is very, very threatening.

I will behave as best I can but please consider that the outsourcing, stagnant wages, overworking, un affordable insurance, dying pensions and stress that I suspect many of you are only just becoming acquainted with have been with folks like me for 25 years now. We are goin' down hard and not. a. peep. from all of Washington (including Mr. and Mrs. Clinton).

This makes civility a bit harder to affect.

But I will try. I always do.

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AwakeAtLast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 10:42 PM
Response to Original message
53. Absolutely!
:kick:

K & R!

:kick:
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Imagevision Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-23-07 10:45 PM
Response to Original message
54. I agree, I've decided to leave the mud-slinging up to Hillary....
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NobleCynic Donating Member (991 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-24-07 05:56 PM
Response to Original message
56. Politics isn't a game for children
One who only speaks of the good things in life lacks the depth and contrast for there to be any meaning in their words. Sometimes a candidate isn't better. Sometimes they other candidate is just worse. Neuter the negative, and you take away the relevance of the positive.

I will retain the right to express my displeasure with anyone I so chose.
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